Termination of Pregnancy (Abortion) in Portugal

Information on who to contact and how to proceed in the event of an unwanted pregnancy. Also information on family planning clinics...

As a result of a referendum held early in 2007, abortion on demand is legal in Portugal up until the tenth week of pregnancy. The referendum also guarantees a woman's right to full, free, and confidential medical care during the abortion process (whether via medical abortion with the abortion pill or via surgical abortion).

In the following cases the procedure may take place further in the gestation period:

  • 12 weeks: when the pregnancy poses a risk to the woman's life or mental health
  • 16 weeks: when the pregnancy has resulted from rape or a sexual crime
  • 24 weeks: In case of incurable disease or malformation of the fœtus

Doctors are required to offer the woman access to psychological counselling prior to the procedure.

Emergency Contraception Pill (ECP)/The Morning-After Pill

The "morning-after pill", which prevents implantation of a fertilized egg, has been legal in Portugal since 2000. It can be obtained from pharmacies without a prescription. It is most effective when taken within the first 12 hours after intercourse and must be used within 72 hours. The pill is sold under the names Postinor-2, Norlevo and Tetragynon.

Family Planning

The Portuguese Family Planning Association (Associação para o Planeamento da Família, APF) has helplines for pregnant women, and some information in English.

Further Information